Ever wanted to know what made the artists in your music library tick? What albums inspired their own? Their personal musical history? Wonder no more for Mytacism Music has got your Monday Inspiration to show you the albums that inspired the albums. With another Monday we see Jacob Davich tell the tale of how Joni Mitchell’s ‘Blue’ inspired his debut EP, a release that will make you run out of ways to say ‘beautiful’.
While it’s hard to put a finger on just one album that inspired my writing, Joni Mitchell’s ‘Blue’ album is as good a choice as any. It was during my 70’s exploratory phase, and my father recommended I give it a listen. I remember throwing it in while driving my mom’s Acura on the way to school. The ride to school wasn’t long enough to enjoy it in it’s entirety, but the ride home was long enough to finish it. I had never heard of Joni Mitchell before but right away from the first track, “All I Want,” it was clear I was listening to something entirely unique. It seemed as though each and every song was challenging my musicianship, begging the question, “what the hell chord was that?”. Her hauntingly beautiful voice moved through her upper register with such ease, and yet it didn’t feel like she was trying to show off at all. It left me feeling inspired, enlightened, slightly jealous perhaps, but most importantly it made me feel challenged. I learned quite a lot of new tricks from these songs as I learned how to play them, musically that is. Now in my writing I always try to sneak in some clever lick or chord that will hopefully leave other musicians asking, “wait what did he just do there?”
I didn’t know it at the time, but Blue turned out to be one of the very few records that I enjoy listening to in it’s entirety without skipping a song. That’s really quite rare isn’t it? Every song is still unique and enjoyable years later. One of my favorite lyrics is “But when he’s gone, me and them lonesome blues collide. The bed’s too big, the frying pan’s too wide.” The simple poetry of describing how someone feels when their father is missing from your life. Feeling like a tiny bit of butter in an extra large frying pan, I know exactly how she feels by that line. That song, “My Old Man,” would have to be my favorite. The lyrics are heartbreaking and the music is challenging, I love it. The strongest memory I have tied to this record is the feeling of youth. I can remember what it was like being exposed to a seemingly never ending barrage of music from this time. I was seventeen years old and had seven hours a day to play guitar and teach myself songs that interested me. I was a kid in a candy store.